Potentially Hazardous’ Asteroid Twice the Size of Empire State Building to Fly by Earth.
A massive asteroid will be flying through Earth’s side of the solar system on Tuesday, but the planet will be at a safe — albeit, a relatively close — distance from the celestial object.
According to CBS News, asteroid 7482 (1994 PC1) will pass by the planet at a distance of 1,231,184 miles, the closest it has come since 1933, when it approached Earth at a distance of about 700,000 miles.
The asteroid is estimated to be around 3,280 feet in length, EarthSky reported, which is more than twice the height of the 1,454-foot-tall Empire State Building, and taller than the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building at more than 2,716 feet tall. (The asteroid that led to the extinction of the dinosaurs 65 million years ago is estimated to be about 6.2 miles, or more than 31,680 feet, in length.)
Its next closest visit will be in January 2105, when it’s expected to come within 1.4 million miles of Earth, CBS News said. For comparison, the Moon is about 238,855 miles from Earth on average, according to NASA.
The space rock was first observed in August 1994 by Robert McNaught at the Siding Spring Observatory in Australia, according to EarthSky, and astronomers were able to piece together its orbit after spotting it in earlier images.